Piercing Eyes

One day, Nordic Boy and I were driving around town, and we remembered that we had to stop at a grocery store to buy a loaf of bread.

Him: Where should we stop? What’s around here?
Me: Let’s just go to…Metropolis Mah-tar-tar…
Him: Whaat?
Me: Sorry, what did I just say?
Him: You said “Metropolis Matartar.” In a freaky zombie voice.
Me: I DID?

What I had meant to say, what I had started to say, was “Metropolitan Market.” A run-of-the-mill chain of grocery stores with a run-of-the-mill name. But as I started to say it, something just…happened. I looked out the window, got distracted by something, and then started to talk in a slow, creepy drawl. Met-ropp-oh-liss Mah-tarrrr-tarrrr…

Come on, kind of freaky right? It’s like my brain took a little holiday and I went into demon possession mode or something. And also, what the hell is a matartar? What sort of bread-buying speaking in tongues just happened? I can’t even remember saying it. I even had my doubts about whether I actually did say it. How could I have left my body for a moment like that and not know? That doesn’t really happen to people right? Well, non-senile people anyway. I am skeptical that this really happened the way he said it did.

Ever since then, Nordic Boy has gleefully told all of our friends about me possibly having a small scale stroke wherein I said Metropolis Matartarrr in a scary voice while looking, glassy-eyed, out the car window, before snapping back into reality. All of my friends call it Metropolis Matartar now. I get teased every time a Metropolitan Market is seen. Biogirl has just adopted the phrase into her regular vocabulary without a hint of derision. “I’m going to The Matartar after work today- you need anything?” she’ll say.

Even though I am skeptical, I just sort of have to eat that one, I guess. I can’t exactly prove it didn’t happen.

Then, this week:

Biogirl and I were eating dinner at one of our favorite places. And we were talking about the relative merits of each of the Thomas Crown Affair movies. You know, as you do. We were in 100% solidarity that Steve McQueen wins over Pierce Brosnan. No contest, really.

Biogirl: Yeah, Pierce Brosnan. I just, I’m not feeling him.
Me: Yeah.
Biogirl: I mean, so much of the storyline is about how the female lead is so enamored with him, you know? And Pierce Brosnan just doesn’t merit that sort of feeling. Pierce Brosnan is, to me, not attractive. Not in that way. Pierce Brosnan is more attractive to the older ladies maybe. But for me, no thank you Pierce Brosnan!
Me: So, no Pierce for you, eh?
Her: Pierce? Who’s Pierce? Hawkeye Pierce?

DUDES. Not only was the topic of conversation directly preceding my statement ALL ABOUT PIERCE BROSNAN, but did she or did she not just say the words “Pierce Brosnan” like, a million times just a second ago? But yet, there she is, looking at me in UTTER CONFUSION as to why I have said the word “Pierce” in her presence.

Me: Pierce BROSNAN. Who you were just talking about.
Her: Oh totally. Right.

And that’s when I saw that someone’s brain CAN totally shut off. Because when she looked at me and said “Hawkeye Pierce?”, she had weird zombie eyes. Like there was NOTHING THERE. And then, as soon as I prompted her, she snapped right back to herself.

This has made me accept the Matartar story. When some people leave their body, they talk nonsense words. When other people leave their body, they talk about Alan Alda. One of the two.


  1. Josh is convinced I had a stroke, I always say the wrong word, he's just taken to assuming that if I say oven, train, or river I really mean fridge, bus or lake. I don't even notice I'm doing it. But, since we ALL do it, I'm guessing not a stroke?

  2. Dude! I do that every night in the 60 seconds it takes me to go from awake to completely asleep.. I talk all kinds of shit in my almost asleep state. Chris tells me about it the next day. It's really quite something. I don't think I've ever done it while truly awake though.

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